Hoi An chicken and rice

Hoi An chicken and rice

Com gà Hội An

Real Vietnamese Cooking
Michael Fountoulakis

This is a Vietnamese version of the classic dish Hainan chicken, originally brought to Hoi An by Chinese traders. The addition of Vietnamese mint gives it that local twist.


Quantity Ingredient
1 x 1.6kg chicken
3cm fresh ginger, thinly sliced
1 onion, roughly chopped
2 spring onions, cut into thirds
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
6 whole black peppercorns
2 tablespoons fish sauce
400g jasmine rice
2 tablespoons Rendered chicken fat
or 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
3 red asian shallots, finely diced
2 garlic cloves, finely diced

To serve

Quantity Ingredient
1 cucumber, sliced
vietnamese mint
2 tablespoons Fried shallots
1 lime, cut into 6 wedges
Soy chilli dipping sauce
Chilli sauce


  1. Wash the chicken and pat dry with paper towel. Place the ginger, onion and spring onion into the cavity of the chicken.
  2. Place the chicken in a large saucepan and cover with cold water. Add the sugar, salt and peppercorns. Bring to the boil then reduce the heat and simmer for 45-50 minutes, skimming off any froth that rises to the surface. Test whether the chicken is cooked by inserting a skewer into the thigh - the juices will run clear.
  3. Remove the chicken from the stock and leave to cool slightly. Take the chicken meat from the bone and cut or tear into strips. Cover and keep warm.
  4. Remove any fat from the surface of the stock and reserve for cooking the rice. Add the fish sauce to the stock and place back over the heat. Reduce the stock by approximately one-third to intensify the flavour. Strain the stock through a colander lined with a piece of fine muslin.
  5. Rinse the rice under cold running water until the water runs clear. Run your hand through the rice to get rid of any excess water. Set aside.
  6. In a saucepan, heat the chicken fat or oil over medium heat, then sauté the shallot and garlic until fragrant. Add the rice and stir. Continue cooking for 2-3 minutes, or until the rice grains are hot to touch -this will help the rice readily absorb the flavours from the aromatics and the stock.
  7. Pour in 625 ml of the stock, standing back from the pan as it will bubble and spit a little. Stir the rice, then cover the pan and reduce to a simmer. Allow to cook for 15 minutes.
  8. Turn off the heat, but leave the lid on for a further 10 minutes to let the cooking process finish.
  9. To serve the chicken and rice, place a mound of rice on six individual plates. Arrange the cucumber and herbs beside the rice. Place a small pile of chicken next to the rice and drizzle with a teaspoon of hot stock to keep it moist.
  10. Top the rice with the fried shallots. Serve with the lime wedges and the two dipping sauces.
Real Vietnamese Cooking
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